Isn’t London great? All the capital is in the capital. Boris is polishing his crown, claiming it’s becoming “the capital of the World”. Evan Davis of Dragon’s Den fame travels around the country giving everywhere else an inferiority complex.
It’s not often I watch something quasi-intellectual on tv, but then it’s not often I have control of the tv remote. Last night’s “Mind the Gap” was a tale of London vs. the North. Apart from Evan didn’t come past Hull, and thinks the North is in Manchester.
Woe betide any town outside of London that tries to make something of itself. And even then it’s successes are attributed to the neighbouring cities. They’re viewed as limpets, clinging to a rock for security. Thankfully a guy sat in a pub in Hebden Bridge (a small town in Yorkshire, population 4,500) talks some sense. He informs us that Hebden Bridge is the UK’s second biggest city. It’s suburbs are called Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham… (I love this guy’s perspective).
However, you still need to travel about 125 miles further away from London to find the true North, where I’m based. Statistics show we have the worst unemployment rates, lowest wages, lowest achievement rates, worst health…the list goes on and makes very depressing reading. Is there any hope? Is it possible to make a success here?
I guess that depends on your view of what constitutes success. Could Evan Davis be considered more of a success than the millionaires on Dragon’s Den, or is it the other way round? Is it about fame, money, achievements or accolades? Or is it about making a difference to people’s lives?
I believe it’s most certainly the latter. And isn’t the North where we need that most?
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